Wild salmon patties recipe (gluten-free and paleo) - Pamela Salzman Skip to content

Wild salmon patties recipe (gluten-free and paleo)

wild salmon patties | pamela salzman

Happy new year!  I’m just curious, are you on a cleanse?  Which one?  There are soooo many, I’m not sure if you’ve noticed.  I have noticed, because I live in LA and I teach cooking classes all the time and once I resume teaching tomorrow, I’m going to hear all about what cleanses my students are on!

my favorite canned wild salmon

Some are hard core and just drink juice all day.  I swear.  Just.  Juice.  No.  Food.  Others will suffer through a concoction of lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup.  Then there are easier cleanses where you can actually eat real food, as long as it doesn’t contain gluten, alcohol, dairy, sugar, red meat, or caffeine.  Or peanuts.  Or oranges.  Or tomatoes.

wild salmon patty ingredients

I’m just having a little fun here.  I think if a cleanse can help break some bad habits, great.  I’m not really a fan of not eating food though, unless you are at a spa and you don’t have to work, drive your kids to school, help them with homework or make meals for your family.

mix it all together

I am a fan of thinking about the person you want to be – healthy, energetic, positive, creative, maintaining a healthy weight – and making a commitment to eat in a way that supports that vision.  Continuing to overeat and drink after the holidays does not promote good health.  Overdoing sugar and simple carbs doesn’t either.  Maybe just a little more mindfulness and some specific, realistic goals are what we need.

wild salmon patties | pamela salzman

How does all this tie into these wild salmon patties?  Not sure.  But my son, Mr. Picky, thought I should finally post this recipe.  Yes, Mr. Picky loves these salmon patties. I know he probably shouldn’t be called Mr. Picky anymore, but I could give you 579 reasons why the name stays.   Mr. Picky actually does like salmon, as well as many other types of fish.  The more simply prepared, the better.

The first time I made these salmon patties, Mr. Picky said to me, “Mom, the next time you want to make salmon, think salmon patties!”  Ok, little dude.  These are a little different from many fish patties though, because they are lacking filler.  They’re basically just salmon.  No bread, breadcrumbs or crackers were used here.  Maybe that’s why I thought they’d be a good, clean eat at the beginning of the new year when a lot of us are looking for good, clean eats.

wild salmon patties  | pamela salzman

They are also made with canned salmon, so this can be a last minute pantry meal if you happen to keep canned salmon around.  I buy my canned salmon from Vital Choice because it’s the best I’ve found.  It’s wild, clean, and the cans are not lined with BPA.  What more can you ask for?  (Unfortunately, it’s a tad expensive.  But feel free to use whatever canned wild salmon is your fave.)  I also love this recipe because you can prepare the patties in the morning, refrigerate them and then cook them up for dinner when you get home.  Love recipes like this!

wild salmon patties  | pamela salzman

I serve these on a salad with avocado and baked sweet potato fries, or with cauliflower mashed potatoes and some greens.  I suppose you could serve them on a hamburger bun, but only if you’re eating flour, grains, gluten and you’re not Paleo or grain-free.  Just saying.

wild salmon patties  | pamela salzman


4.4 from 8 reviews
Wild Salmon Patties
Serves: makes 8 patties (I think this serves 4 people well)
  • 24 ounces canned wild salmon, preferably without bones, drained
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 small or 1 large shallot, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • unrefined coconut oil or olive oil for sautéing
  1. Place the drained salmon in a large bowl and break it up with a fork.
  2. Add remaining ingredients, except oil, to the bowl and gently mix until combined.
  3. Form into patties with your hands and place on a flat plate or small baking sheet.  Refrigerate, covered, for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 day.
  4. Warm a griddle or large skillet over medium with enough oil to cover the pan ⅛-inch deep.
  5. Place the salmon patties in the pan and cook until golden brown on the underside.  Carefully flip the patty (I like to do this by sliding a metal spatula under the patty with one hand and flipping the patty against the side of the pan and allowing it to slide back down to cook the other side.  This will help avoid splattering and breaking the patty.) and cook the other side until golden brown.  You don’t have to worry about whether or not the salmon cakes are cooked through, because canned salmon is already cooked.
  6. Serve warm with a side salad or on a rice bowl.  I also like putting a little chipotle Vegenaise and some avocado on top.

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  1. Made these last night and they were super delish! My hubby made his usual stink face when I told him I was making a new recipe, and another stink face when I told him it was salmon patties, but once it was all said and done,he went for seconds and would not stop saying how good they were! I love that this recipe doesn’t have mayo or bread, so much healthier than the typical salmon patty recipe. For those who had trouble with them holding together, make sure you preheat your pan well, and get a good brown sear on them. The sear will help them stay together, and the crust that forms from the sear it the best part of this recipe. I topped mine with avocado slices and green onion (anytime I cut green onion on the diagonal, the food instantly looks like elevated restaurant quality). Honestly, you’d be hard pressed to find a restaurant that serves salmon patties that are 1)wild, and 2)healthy. So much better to make at home! Thank you Pamela!!!

    • Haha! Gotta love the stink face! GREAT pointers you gave, especially about getting that good brown crust on the patties. Same goes for veggie burgers! Thanks, Jennifer!

  2. Can you freeze?

    • I don’t see why not. I see frozen salmon patties in the supermarket….

  3. Made it tonight with canned tuna (and extra egg to bind because I had 25 oz tuna) and your Thai crunch salad on the side. Delicious!

  4. Hi Pamela,
    My daughter loves salmon bit is allergic to eggs, would flax seed eggs work in this recipe? If not, what can I substitute the eggs for?

    • You might try an egg-free mayonnaise, like Vegenaise. Start with a few a tablespoons and see how it holds together.

      • I just made these using Follow Your Heart egg replacer and it turned out great! So yummy!

        • Oooh, good to know! Thanks!

      • Breadcrumbs for what?

  5. what are other options for the canned slamon if someone is on a strict low sodium diet? Is there low sodium canned salmon?

    • I know Vital Choice has a no-sodium added wild canned salmon, but it contains “skin and edible bones.” Since I haven’t tried that product, I can’t say if the bones and skin are annoying. You can probably google to see if there are other brands as well.

  6. Hi Pamela. I just started following you on Instagram and saw you made these for your family. I made the patties tonight and they were delicious! Thank you

    • Thank you for following and for letting me know you enjoyed the patties!

  7. I just found your blog and I’m obsessed!!!!!!!!! As a college student with a busy schedule who’s never home and is trying to cut back on eating out and eat healthy, stuff like this is perfect.. And you’re super funny! your blog is everything.

    • Woohoo! So glad you’re here! I have two girls in college, so I understand your challenges. Hope you let me know what you cook up in the kitchen!

  8. i made a half recipe for the salmon cakes. They were very wet and did not hold together well, I refrigerated them for ours. lots of moisture drained out. I reformed the patties and sauteed them. still not stick together. what went wrong ans how to correct. taste ok.

    • Hmmm, it’s hard to say. Is it possible you didn’t drain the salmon? That’s where the moisture would be coming from. If you still have some patties that have not been cooked and they are still wet, I would add some breadcrumbs or if you are grain-free, add some coconut flour (maybe a tablespoon or 2.) Let me know if you have any further questions.

    • I know this is an old post, but thought I’d answer anyhow. Sometimes adding another egg, which helps bind ingredients, can be helpful.

      • very true! thanks, nancy!

  9. Where can I find vital choice canned wild salmon? I live in the LA area? Are there any other canned salmon that you recommend ?

    • You have to order it online vitalchoice.com. I’m sure there are other good brands available at Whole Foods, for example. But I haven’t tried any lately. Sorry!

    • Mixhelle,Trader Joe’s has great canned wild salmon.

  10. Would this recipe work with fresh salmon cut into small pieces?

    • Probably, but I haven’t tried it. I have a fresh salmon burger recipe that I am debuting in my classes in May and it’s a little different.

  11. Hi… I have never used canned salmon. Is it possible to try this recipe with fresh, baked salmon? If so, how much do you think would be best to use? I know the weight of canned salmon might differ from fresh? Thanks. LOVING your website so much and can’t wait to try out so many recipes. 🙂

    • Hi! I haven’t tried this particular recipe with baked salmon, but if I were going to give it a go, I would sub about 3/4 cup cooked salmon for about 6-8 ounces of canned. Let me know how it turns out!

  12. When I told my son that I was making salmon patties, he yelled, “NO!” He ate two and said they were delicious. 🙂 Thank you!

    • Hahaha! Very cute! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  13. Just made these tonight! Delish!! Loved your recipe! It was a hit. Perfection, just like all your other recipes are too. Healthful, delicious, easy, and come out tasting so wonderful! You are a God send!

    • Woo hoo! Love it when I read comments like this. Thanks, Lindsey!!

  14. Chipotle veganaise sounds amazing. Can you share recipe?

    • I buy it!! Vegenaise is the brand and they have a chipotle flavored one. A little spicy! 🙂

      • Shocking but that totally excites me. Thanks, Pamela!

        • Then you must be like me. WHen I first saw Chiptole Vegenaise, it made my week!

  15. Total success in our house. My own “Mr. Picky” ate two and fell off his chair when I told him they were salmon, since he isn’t usually a fan. Cant wait to put these into the rotation. I found mine to be a bit salty so when I make them again I will scale down the salt. It was probably the salt content in my canned salmon. Thank you!!!!!

    • That is a success! How great is that?! Thanks for the tip about the salt. I think manufacturers all probably use different quantities in their products. 🙂

  16. Thanks Pamela,
    Starting the year eliminating stuff, so this sounds perfect!

    • That’s what I was thinking! 🙂

  17. YUM! Can’t wait to make these! Thanks!

    • You’ll love!

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I come from a large Italian-American family with 28 first cousins (on one side of the family!) where sit-down holiday dinners for 85 people are the norm (how, you might ask – organization! But more on that later …).

Some of my fondest memories are of simple family gatherings, both large and small, with long tables of bowls and platters piled high, the laughter of my cousins echoing and the comfort of tradition warming my soul.

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